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22 January 2014

Road casualties mount

Barn Owl road casualty, Co. Kerry, November 2013 (M.O'Clery).

Several Barn Owl road casualties have been reported over the past months, each a blow to a population which has been diminished by a record poor breeding season in 2013. The new bypass in Tralee has claimed one, and another, reported to us yesterday, was also killed by a car.

This one had a ring on its' leg, and a check of the records revealed that it had been ringed as an adult female, by John Lusby, on 27th June 2013 at a nest site near Kenmare. Last summer, she had just one chick in the nest, one of the few we were able to find in south Kerry last summer. She was found dead by the roadside just 9km WSW from the nest site, on the outskirts of Kenmare, 149 days after it was ringed. A sad end to a beautiful bird.